I watched you pop up online just now, but I don’t even know what to say to you anymore.
That crazy smiling blonde hippy chick I met on the rooftop one morning, where in the world is she now? What unimaginable adventures has she done? Is she on a farm in middle Saskatchewan introducing sustainable agri methods, or marching across African countries with unpronounceable names dodging malaria on a daily basis and a giant SLR draped around her neck? Did she sell the SLR in exchange for a dozen goats and the lumber to build a classroom, for the local kids with bare feet but full hearts? Swap her jewellery for roofing iron and an upright piano on which to sing-teach their ABC’s? Is it a daily showdown between untuned piano and flat voices, but the kids don’t care in the slightest – their broad white smiles show through how much they enjoy learning every day. Is the next time I see her face going to be in person, on a book cover or in a newspaper obituary? Does she even remember that boy she met, lost under a sea of fresh memories getting made every day, to call on one day and help her and her village?…
Where is the boy that met her on the rooftop? Is he still drunk with a string of dysfunctional identical relationships with groupies? Badly self-disenfranchised from the music scene he loves so much and feeds him, yet destroys any ounce of spiritual integrity as “Wedding Singer” sellout gigs pay for accidental children fathered in the Tardis toilets, on-the-road corporate video tech dayrates pay the hotel minibar bill? Every day sucking out more blood and soul. Is he any closer to the fabled island paradise, or has it become a softspot that doesn’t get mentioned anymore? Did he attain the dream, the musical equivalent of “The Great American Novel”, the 65min album that launches him from bedroom studio to Abbey Road, from Reggae nights in Revolver to recording at Rockfield, the studio where Freddie laid the vox to Bohemian Rhapsody, or is the album unfinished and collecting dust in a drawer somewhere at an ex’s house? Does he remember that girl, who spoke of how easy it is to be in tune with yourself, how easy it is to be “good” to nature, to others, to yourself? Does he remember himself?
At what point do I realise to attain my goals I need to make drastic changes? Not changes that hurt me, changes that are a leap into the unknown, the uncertain… It’s all good and nice to look at TEDx and Upworthy, but when do I stop driving into town to get a video and a pre-packaged individually wrapped ice cream, and instead actually do something? Is my lasting legacy going to be a few paragraphs in the annals of global commerce, the story of how I made lots of imaginary green bits of paper by making lots of even more imaginary data bits change to spell out what you wanted to hear anyway – corporate stories embellished at times by external sources to be more innovative, unique, inspirational sounding, but really just glitter poured over another cog in the machine making other people do work and profiteering. Or will my legacy be a green mark on the earth? A tribute to Gaia as far as the eye can see? A thank you, back to her for all the love I have received? A giant conservation area thriving for generations to come, deafening birdsong and the playfulness of forest creatures that have never known harm from humans? How do I best go about achieving this?Or would I trade in my opportunities for legacies and change to be complacent at home watching TV? Caving under the overwhelming amount of opportunities presented to me, instead retreating into ‘the idiot box’ to watch the latest blockbuster, gun-toting crime drama hollywood blockbuster because I want to feel excited and important… Spooning on the couch is so much easier than studying. Is the “would I” really a “could I”? Could I live with myself if I don’t take the next leap? If I don’t do something? Now.
Where is the girl I met on the rooftop? Where is she going? Where am I going?